i’m 43. but the funny thing is that, aside from being old, i still get to know what it feels like to be a kid in class.
i’m currently taking three graduate classes in order to not only further my education as a teacher but also to learn to become a better writer. in class, i still get just as excited as children do when they are in class and are called on by the teacher. i’ve had nights when i know the right answer, and i’m raising my hand like a 6th grader waiting to be called on. when the teacher calls on me and i give that answer, and then she lets the whole class know that i’m exactly right, it’s still a pretty good thrill.
i’ve been teaching about 18 years, and i usually make an effort to make sure i call on different kids without focusing on just a few. and when kids have incorrect answers, i try to find a way to make it positive. i’ll say, “that would be the right answer if blah blah blah, so that’s a really close answer, but blah blah blah.”
parents, teachers, older people – do the kids a favor. when they come to you with something that they’re correct about or happy about, please make it a big deal. they really get a thrill from your approval. they feed off it like blood to a mosquito. you might not know how much it hurts when you slap them down, and you might not know how happy it makes them when you verbally and physically pat them on the back.
you don’t need to buy them video games or fancy new clothes. just give them some nice words and attention. i’m 43, and i still like it too.